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Healthy Cooking Plus

Why It's Lighter—Quick Breads

From p. 14 of the Aug/Sep 2008 Issue of Healthy Cooking

Applesauce Bread Recipe

Applesauce Bread

Want to make any quick bread recipe lighter? Try these extra ideas from our Test Kitchen. And be sure to check out the two recipes in our August/September issue.

Start with the oil or butter.

  • You can usually decrease the total amount of oil or butter by about 10 to 15 percent without missing it.
  • After cutting down the total, substitute 1/4 to 1/2 of the remaining butter or oil with unsweetened applesauce.
  • If you're substituting a substantial amount (1/2 to 1 cup) of applesauce for oil or butter, you can also slightly reduce the sugar in a recipe.


Look at the eggs.

  • When baking, it's okay to substitute some egg whites for whole eggs. Try to stay away from using all whites because the texture will be compromised.
  • However, substituting whites for some whole eggs can allow room for butter or other high-fat or high-calorie ingredients without compromising the texture.
  • Because there are so many servings in a baked good, fat and calories in one serving are pretty small per whole egg. One whole egg has 78 calories and 5.3 g of fat; when you divide that by 12 or 16 servings in 1 loaf of bread, the number is insignificant.


Consider how much sugar you're using.

  • You can usually decrease the amount of sugar by 25 percent without missing sweetness.
  • Fruit purees, like unsweetened applesauce or prune baby food, add natural sweetness when used to replace some of the butter or oil.
  • You can further decrease the sugar if your original recipe already contains fruit, such as mashed banana, dried apricots or raisins.
  • Sugar adds up quickly, so even a small decrease can make a big difference.
    1 tablespoon = 48 calories and 12 g carbs


Cut back on mix-ins.

  • Without affecting the final product, you can decrease the amount of fatty mix-ins like nuts and chocolate chips. If you chop nuts smaller and buy miniature chips, they become more evenly dispersed, giving you more pieces per bite.
  • Toast nuts and coconut for additional flavor.
  • Calories and fat from nuts can add up quickly.
    1 tablespoon = 51 calories and 5.3 g fat

 
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